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Discussion Starter #1
I may have missed it but is the ammoinia locked to total?

Prime will lock up the ammonia but that locked ammonia will still show up as ammonia in most test kits like the api test kit.

the seachem multitest ammonia kit measures free and total (the sum of free and locked) ammonia. I believe the seachem ammonia dot also measures just the free ammonia. You might want to check those values.

What can happen is you keep adding prime when it is not necessary. Prime also locks up oxygen so it is possible to suffocate the fish with overdosing.


my .02
 

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What can happen is you keep adding prime when it is not necessary. Prime also locks up oxygen so it is possible to suffocate the fish with overdosing.


my .02
Please, please, please show me where this has been the case. I am begging you! You've stated this several times on here so I'd really love to know!

You know what a quick Google search on the topic showed me? Prime Overdose -vs- Oxygen - Seachem Support Forums
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Please, please, please show me where this has been the case. I am begging you! You've stated this several times on here so I'd really love to know!

You know what a quick Google search on the topic showed me? Prime Overdose -vs- Oxygen - Seachem Support Forums

that refrenced forum a post by seachem said:
Thank you very much for pointing this out to us; we hope to help clear up this issue and would truly appreciate you passing the information along once receiving it. All water conditioners are reducing agents; reducing agents will "reduce" whatever is available within the aquarium. For example, it reduces chlorine(Cl2) to two separate chloride molecules. Though the potential to reduce oxygen is there with any reducing agent, this is very, very rare. Prime can be safely overdosed up to five times the recommended amount in an emergency situation. Doing so is very safe, and it would take a massive overdose to have any effect on the oxygen levels in the tank. Because Prime only works for 24-48 hours, its effects do not build up over time. Hope this helps! Please let us know if you have further questions.
Although they poo-hoo the effect they do admit it in fact does reduce oxygen.

As I stated before the danger is you dose Prime (or any other dechlor or ammonia lock) and you still test ammonia. Even if that first dose completely locked up the ammonia.

So you dose again. test ammonia does again etc etc etc.

All the while locking oxygen. As Seachem admits above.

so you can suffocate the fish even if seachem doesn't want to admit it.

All the while only the first dose was required.

These type chemicals have side effects.

To me it is better to add fast growing plants to consume the ammonia while also sucking out carbon dioxide and returning oxygen. In that case the side effect is a healthier aquarium.

my .02
 

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Although they poo-hoo the effect they do admit it in fact does reduce oxygen.

As I stated before the danger is you dose Prime (or any other dechlor or ammonia lock) and you still test ammonia. Even if that first dose completely locked up the ammonia.

So you dose again. test ammonia does again etc etc etc.

All the while locking oxygen. As Seachem admits above.

so you can suffocate the fish even if seachem doesn't want to admit it.

All the while only the first dose was required.

These type chemicals have side effects.

To me it is better to add fast growing plants to consume the ammonia while also sucking out carbon dioxide and returning oxygen. In that case the side effect is a healthier aquarium.

my .02
I quoted a very specific section of your post. So once again allow me to ask you to SHOW ME WHERE IT KILLS FISH. Please and thank you.

Since I understand how dechlorinators affect test I didn't require that part. Testing after 24 hours would show a decrease in even locked ammonia...if the cycle was working. Locked ammonia is still available for use by bacteria AND plants.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I quoted a very specific section of your post. So once again allow me to ask you to SHOW ME WHERE IT KILLS FISH. Please and thank you.

Since I understand how dechlorinators affect test I didn't require that part. Testing after 24 hours would show a decrease in even locked ammonia...if the cycle was working. Locked ammonia is still available for use by bacteria AND plants.

I'm sure seachem would not mention that.

To me it is kinda obvious that locking oxygen can kill fish.

I had also read the msds on another conditioner that specifically stated it was dangerous to aquatic live and should not be disposed of in lakes and streams.

Not to mention various city water authorities warning about overdosing dechlors and the like.


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I'm sure seachem would not mention that.

To me it is kinda obvious that locking oxygen can kill fish.

I had also read the msds on another conditioner that specifically stated it was dangerous to aquatic live and should not be disposed of in lakes and streams.

Not to mention various city water authorities warning about overdosing dechlors and the like.


my .02
Sources please. Show us all at what point Prime become lethal to aquarium life. If you're going to advise people against something like the use of dechlorinator then you need to back up your position.

*edit*Found a source from Seachem! http://www.seachem.com/support/forums/showthread.php?t=2804 So just don't overdose by 20X the recommendation.
 

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I got the talk about Prime previously. My suggestion is do your research then ask questions. I don't use any of the dechlorinator with additives. Just let it do what it was designed to do and cycle the tank naturally as possible.
 

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I got the talk about Prime previously. My suggestion is do your research then ask questions. I don't use any of the dechlorinator with additives. Just let it do what it was designed to do and cycle the tank naturally as possible.
Who is this directed towards?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
FWIW and IMHO I think the thread title should be change from using "prime"

The locking up of oxygen is not limited to prime but is true of all ammonia locks and dechlorinators.

So instead of picking on prime you might want to change the title to dechlorinators/ammonia locks instead of Prime.

my .02
 

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Discussion Starter #10
consider this:

Found the msds for API ammo lock.

here:

http://www.apifishcare.com/pdf/Ammo-Lock.pdf

will email to if you want. email me at [email protected].

(or just look at above link. LOL)

Ammo lock contains:

alphatic amine salts, proprietary
sodium thiosulfate pentahydrate


Of particular interest is the sodium thiosulfate which is a very commonly used dechlor.


mscs ammo lock said:
Marine Pollutant Yes


Very toxic to aquatic organisms.

Do NOT allow product to come in contact with surface waters or to intertidal areas below the mean high water

mark. Do not contaminate water when cleaning equipment or disposing of equipment wash-waters.
Wastes resulting from use of the product must be disposed of on site or at approved waste sites.
for thiosulfates:

So while seachem is probably absolutely correct there is little danger at recommended doses, there is a danger as they hinted to in general terms. These products are not without adverse side effects.

dechlor ammonium locks are in fact toxic to aquatic life.

Even if there were no pratical way of suffocating our fish I do not feel adding chemicals to our tanks that would kill fish in a stream near the factory producing those chemicals is an acceptable risk in my tank.

I also believe the side effects are much greater then what seachem and other producers talk about.

Especially when all one has to do is start an aquarium like live plants and wait a week.

Still that's just my .02
 

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1. Everything is harmful in excess. I need to drink water to live, but if I try to drink several gallons quickly I will end up with dilutional hyponatremia. If I have a headache I take aspirin, but if I take the whole bottle I will end up with liver damage and/or death.

2.My problem is not your statement that fish can be killed by an overdose of dechlorinators, but the statements tht you make to new aquarists that seem to imply it is easily done.

3.Live plants are not mandatory for aquariums. Aquarists should be able to keep them or not as they see fit.

4.Saying all you need to do is plant the tank and wait a week is true, but misleading. Many of the plants new aquarists use would do little to help silent cycle a tank. Crypts, mosses, Anubais, Java ferns are all slow growers. Fast stems and floaters are need in quantity and then they only work if their care requirements are met. Something a new fish keeper might not know about.

5.I have no problem with you not using dechlorinator because it works for you. I do however dislike the fact that you advice against it for everyone. I have chloramine in my water. Chloramine will not dissipate like chlorine does. Even with plentiful oxygen and sunlight Chloramine-T can last for a week. That is under extreme conditions and not those found in aquariums.

6.I'm not worried about the effects of chloramine on my fish, but rather what it would do to the colony of beneficial bacteria in my tanks (one unplanted). That would in turn harm my fish indirectly.

7.There is no one way to do things. If someone told me they had chlorine and let it dissipate overnight before adding water I'd be fine with that instead of using a dechlorinator. My problem in the whole dechlorinate vs not debate is that background info is not found out first, advice is just given - and that advice, while well meaning, might not be the best in a given situation.

8.I have no personal qualms against you beaslbob, nor you henningc, nor anyone else on this forum. We are all here trying to get advice or to give it. I respect both those who come seeking knowledge and those willing to give their time spreading knowledge. I do however think it is important for ALL the experienced aquarists on the forum to realize that there are multiple ways to do things, multiple brands that will work, multiple advice to give and that it always needs tailored to fit the individual's situation.
 

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Sure the live plants do help..if one does the cycle correctly and actually wants plants. But what I'm curious about now with the way you dislike Sodium Thiosulfate. Thats not really only in Prime..it's most in dechlor products. In fact it's used for beneficial human application.. such as ->
"Medical

It is used as an antidote to cyanide poisoning.[6][7] Thiosulfate acts as a sulfur donor for the conversion of cyanide to thiocyanate (which can then be safely excreted in the urine), catalyzed by the enzyme rhodanase.
It has also been used as treatment of calciphylaxis in hemodialysis patients with end-stage renal disease.[8]
It is used in the management of extravasations during chemotherapy. Sodium thiosulfate prevents alkylation and tissue destruction by providing a substrate for the alkylating agents that have invaded the subcutaneous tissues. The dose may be 2mL of 0.17M (a solution of 4mL 10% sodium thiosulfate and 6mL sterile water for injection). It may be instilled subcutaneously into multiple sites using a small gauge needle. There are limited data on this method with few recommendations.

in foot baths for prophylaxis of ringworm, and as a topical antifungal agent for tinea versicolor.
in measuring the volume of extracellular body fluid and the renal glomerular filtration rate
"
Now I know fish aren't human but exactly why is this so worrisome to you? Also in reading the link on Ammo-Lock it sounds like you've pulled only from it what the waste products from the manufacturing plants risk might be. everything else is pretty much..*not been proven to be unsafe however use caution*(my simplified summary ;-) )
The sodium thiosulfate pentahydrate warnings sound like the concentrated crystal form in grossly huge spill or overdosing. Penicillin can cure many thing yet overdosing can also kill many living things.


I just want to know how do you deal with chloramines? If you don't have it in your water well lucky you! I suppose if I didn't and I also had all my time free I might age my water ( about 400g of tanks at the moment..and when I gt around to my 240 then about 565g ..that sounds doable! ) I agree less chemicals are better but we must pick our poison as it were... I have tons of plants(well the cichlids and the crays don't but otherwise a lot) don't bother with dosing plant nutrients unless I'm bored once in a blue moon... but I'm going to need something effective for my city water. I'll leave the oxygen arguement out of this because I prefer to only discuss things I'm knowledgable about and that I don't worry enough about it to find out seeing as aside from maybe 2-3 fish deaths (that weren't at the hands of another fish) since keeping fish from ~12(my salty days) till now at my 13th year of being 21;-).


But BWG is right.. The advice given should be appropriate for the poster. We don't all keep our fish the same way and pushing a certain method of fishkeeping no matter how good a way it is can be off-putting (I'll concede my first response wasn't too helpful either though :oops:)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Agent 13.

I had already stated why I don't like chemicals.

On the chloramines, my current water authority currently and has for 10 years used it. Additionally, all the cities I set up tanks in since the late '70s were city water. Some reservoir, some aqurifers. All with standard treatements.

FWIW water authorities that switched from chlorine gas to chloramines noticed some interesting side effects. Seems the system got coated with algae because the aerobic bacteria bloomed creating algae/cyano problems. Even ns the closed holding tanks and plumbing. So they had to flush out the systems to prevent that from happening.

I thought that was particulary interesting from two aspects. First, a high percentage of the at faucet tap water already had the chlorimines removed. Secondly, because the chloramines create the bacteria we want or the bacteria broke down the chloramines. Either way, the fear of chloramines lasting forever on these boards is unrealistic. I have no fear that a planted tank will have no chlorine, ammonia, nor chloramines after a week. Given light, mechanical filters (which I don't use) the breakdown of chlrimines will happen even quicker.

Whatever happens I just take tap water, run it from a cold faucet for a minute, collect a gallon or so and add it driectly to my tanks to replace evaporative. I have never seen any sign if stress in my FW, salt, and mixed reef tanks. And they had extremely heavy bioloads to boot. My old 10g had around 30 guppies with 6 or so reprodicing adults from the original cycle trio for instance. That population was stable for over 8 years.

I also had a newbie on another forum who had just started a 10g and had that first platty in it. After 3 days, the platty had all the signs of stress. Laying on the bottom, breathing heavy, listless and so on. They were thinking of adding a filter and I recommended anacharis which they added instead. They were amazed at the results with the platty breathing normal zipping around, very active in only 4 hours.

So bottom line is I just have different experiences. I enjoy sharing those experiences so that newbies can have fish that recover instead of die.

But it's all just my .02
 

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Thanks for taking the time to share a bit more about your experiences, I don't recall really ever hearing very much from you, apart from 'I do this it works for me,' so it's nice to see just a *bit* more of your perspective.

. . . though that doesn't mean I agree with you! ^.~

I am very much still a beginner - especially when compared to all you old hands around here!

But I read what I can, when I can, and everything that I have read regarding chloramines in the tap water (all fish-related sites aside) goes directly against what you have written above. I'd be very interested in reading anything that you may be able to find along the lines of a study being done - or anything verifiable - apart from personal experiences - to back these statements up. . .

As a mod, I see more than my fair share of posts, and these only too-often include situations where it seems fairly obvious that a chemical like Prime was forgotten during a water change and an ESTABLISHED tank went downhill very quickly - it isn't always a beginner.

I appreciate your willingness to always help out in the best way you know how, and I DO agree with some of the things you say. Anacharis, Hornwort, and a floating plant like Duckweed can make a dramatic difference very quickly in a cycling tank. It worked for me, and you may even have been one of the members to point me in that direction when I started! But it is very confusing when you're new, and being given so many contrary opinions. . . I remember that confusion well. My fish were dying, and I found myself even more befuddled than when I started because I didn't know who to trust - nor did I have the understanding required to pick out the bad advice from the good.

So I'd be lying if I didn't say that it does make me terribly nervous when I see this kind of advice being given to newbies. . . I acknowledge and accept that it works for you, but I do wonder if you might not be willing to be a bit more careful about how you present it? Perhaps mentioning that many others would disagree, and instructing the member to do a bit more research into the subject before deciding for themselves? I do this on nearly every post I respond to, because I'd feel terrible if I steered someone wrong. . . and honestly? MY personal perspective is 'better safe than sorry.' It certainty doesn't HURT to do water changes, and substances that remove chloramines and chlorine from the system are used by so many, I can't believe that they cause that much harm. Chemical-free is awesome, but maybe best to err on the side of caution when we're just starting out. . .

I would like to hear your thoughts on BWG's post above, if you wouldn't mind taking the time?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
...

I would like to hear your thoughts on BWG's post above, if you wouldn't mind taking the time?
I thought I kinda answered all questions on BMG's post. :lol:

Additionally it has several points to would make a long reply to each one.

Is there one or a few really big things you were curious about. So I could concentrate on one of those?

my .02
 

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Agent 13.

FWIW water authorities that switched from chlorine gas to chloramines noticed some interesting side effects. Seems the system got coated with algae because the aerobic bacteria bloomed creating algae/cyano problems. Even ns the closed holding tanks and plumbing. So they had to flush out the systems to prevent that from happening.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
So bottom line is I just have different experiences. I enjoy sharing those experiences so that newbies can have fish that recover instead of die.

But it's all just my .02
Curious then, do you get algae/cyano problems then?

Also more idle curiosity here. If you were to set up a 10 gallon tank using your ideally preferred method could you walk me through it exactly.. substrate, stock, plants how you'd do the cycle(if you do cycle ..you do right?) . Maintenance, decor, equipment etc.
or if you have a 10g setup could you just explain that one ? and maybe a picture?

Pwetty pwetty pwease??
 

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Agent 13.

I had already stated why I don't like chemicals.

On the chloramines, my current water authority currently and has for 10 years used it. Additionally, all the cities I set up tanks in since the late '70s were city water. Some reservoir, some aqurifers. All with standard treatements.

FWIW water authorities that switched from chlorine gas to chloramines noticed some interesting side effects. Seems the system got coated with algae because the aerobic bacteria bloomed creating algae/cyano problems. Even ns the closed holding tanks and plumbing. So they had to flush out the systems to prevent that from happening.

I thought that was particulary interesting from two aspects. First, a high percentage of the at faucet tap water already had the chlorimines removed. Secondly, because the chloramines create the bacteria we want or the bacteria broke down the chloramines. Either way, the fear of chloramines lasting forever on these boards is unrealistic. I have no fear that a planted tank will have no chlorine, ammonia, nor chloramines after a week. Given light, mechanical filters (which I don't use) the breakdown of chlrimines will happen even quicker.

Whatever happens I just take tap water, run it from a cold faucet for a minute, collect a gallon or so and add it driectly to my tanks to replace evaporative. I have never seen any sign if stress in my FW, salt, and mixed reef tanks. And they had extremely heavy bioloads to boot. My old 10g had around 30 guppies with 6 or so reprodicing adults from the original cycle trio for instance. That population was stable for over 8 years.

I also had a newbie on another forum who had just started a 10g and had that first platty in it. After 3 days, the platty had all the signs of stress. Laying on the bottom, breathing heavy, listless and so on. They were thinking of adding a filter and I recommended anacharis which they added instead. They were amazed at the results with the platty breathing normal zipping around, very active in only 4 hours.

So bottom line is I just have different experiences. I enjoy sharing those experiences so that newbies can have fish that recover instead of die.

But it's all just my .02
The platy sounds as if it was suffering from ammonia poisoning. That really has nothing to do with dechlorinators and their effects on oxygen levels, but I think we went off track a while ago. Yes plants will help cycle a tank, as will anything else suggested for a fish-in cycle.

How can cyanobacteria, which creates energy through photosynthesis, thrive in an enclosed tank or pipes? What does the switch from chlorine to chloramine have to do with aerobic bacteria?

Are you perhaps thinking of how chlorine is effective for the treatment of microcystins, while chloramine is not? http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/chemicals/microcystin_sections.pdf

It is true that chloramine is broken down by nitrifying bacteria ( http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC183981/pdf/aem00064-0353.pdf ). This still brings up several things of possible concern though. How much chloramine is in the water and how long does it take the bacteria to break it down? At what levels are chloramines deadly ( Fish disease treatments: Chloramine-T for parasites points to it being more deadly in soft, acidic water like mine but doesn't give a threshold)? There is also the matter of the chlorine that remains after the breakdown of chloramine and what effect it could have on the beneficial bacteria before it dissipates.

Just for fun and to show anything in too great of a quantity can be deadly. Chloramine Facts - Citizens Concerned About Chloramine (CCAC)
 

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Back to the original topic of how products like prime can effect oxygen levels, I too find it hard to believe. I may be new to fish keeping, but I know there are still basic processes taking place, no matter what you add to the water. One of which is the oxygen transfer taking place at the surface, which unless the tank is entirely sealed and becoming stagnant, is an ongoing process. Correct me if I'm wrong, but in order for oxygen levels to drop low enough and stay there long enough to kill off the fish, the process of locking up the oxygen would have to be occuring pretty quickly and pretty consitently to out pace the constant transfer process taking place at the surface. One would have to be overdosing the dechlor by a HUGE amount every time they add it and be adding it at consistent and frequent intervals. Otherwise the oxygen locking process couldn't keep up. One would also have to take in to account the water surface area that their size tank has as well as any surface agitation from equipment like filters, air pumps, or whatever it is people use to create currents plus how many live plants are in the tank (all of which can help to increase oxygen levels). Not to mention the actual oxygen using bio load of the tank (fish, shrimp, snails, etc) would have to be considered. I'm sure there is a threshold at which products like prime could create dangerously low oxygen levels, but it would be so difficult to achieve those conditions that I doubt it would ever happen accidentally. Even if it were plausible to accomplish those conditions by making a rookie mistake, the actual threshold for each individual tank would be so different that I don't think there is any real general advice or warning on the topic other than to follow the instructions on the bottle. Anything more is risking adding even more.confusion and worry to the already confusing and worrisome process of correctly setting up one's first tank.

Not trying to rock the boat too much. Just my .02. Plus I rather enjoy a good discussion :)
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Curious then, do you get algae/cyano problems then?

Also more idle curiosity here. If you were to set up a 10 gallon tank using your ideally preferred method could you walk me through it exactly.. substrate, stock, plants how you'd do the cycle(if you do cycle ..you do right?) . Maintenance, decor, equipment etc.
or if you have a 10g setup could you just explain that one ? and maybe a picture?

Pwetty pwetty pwease??

How about this thread:

http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/advanced-freshwater-discussion/beaslbob-build-295530/#post3321882

Good enough?
 
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